Learning to Love, Rather Than Basking in Scruples

Growing up, I’ve always tried to prevent myself from getting into trouble. I went to great lengths not to upset anyone. I was a “pleaser”.

I was asked once, whether this “pleasing” attitude of mine, had an impact in my relationship with God, and my journey to Him. I was so blinded, that I told that person that I could see no way that it was harming my relationship with the Lord.

I had become obsessed with doing the “right thing” all the time, that I had become almost a robot. I mechanically said the right words, did the right things, thought the the good (yes, I even got my mind to cooperate with me). On the outside, I was the “nice person”, I was the person who would never harm anyone. All this is true, but I had grown to accustomed to this behaviour that most (not all) of my actions were not intentional. I forgot to be sincere. Also, if it wasn’t obvious, I was a scared kid.

Love this.

Now, I could go on forever, about my past, but that is not the point here. I wanted to share that because I want to relate that to how it affected my spiritual progress. As the pleaser, I subconsciously, thought that I had to do the right thing (i.e. not sin), in order to merit His special graces. I took my myself way too seriously. I got so frustrated and then found myself growing weary because I kept “sinning”, even though  I was trying so hard.

It was July 2nd, 2012, when I received the following words during my prayer time:

Try not to focus on ‘not committing’ a certain sin, but rather on loving God more, or learning to do so.”

How profound! My focus was fixed on the wrong thing! The whole reason for our being, is to love God. Our life is our opportunity to learn to Love the one who first loved us, sinners.

Now, rather than praying, “please don’t let me sin”, I pray, “Please teach me to love you, the way I ought.” I also understand now what the Saint meant when they instructed us beginners to “not be scrupulous.”

I pray that each of us can fall more and more and more in love with the Lover of our souls, each second of our lives.